Part III Listening Comprehension
By Vincent Ryan Ruggiero
Self-image is the picture you have of yourself, the sort of person you believe you are. Included in your self-image are the categories in which you place yourself, the roles you play and other similar descriptors you use to identify yourself. If you tell an acquaintance you are a grandfather who recently lost his wife and who does volunteer work on weekends, several elements of your self-image are bought to light — the roles of grandparent, widower and conscientious citizen。<br />But self-image is more than how you picture yourself; it also involves how others see you. Three types of feedback from others are indicative of how they see us: conformation, rejection, and disconfirmation. Conformation occurs when others treat you in a manner consistent with who you believe you are.You believe you have leadership abilities and your boss put you in charge of a new work team. On the other hand, rejection occurs when others treat you in a manner that is inconsistent with yourself definition. Pierre Salinger was appointed senator from California but subsequently lost his first election. He thought he was a good public official, but the voters obviously thought otherwise— Their vote was inconsistent with his self-concept. The third type of feedback is disconfirmation, which occurs when others fail to respond to your notion of self by responding neutrally. A student writes what he thinks is an excellent composition, but the teacher writes no encouraging remarks. Rather than relying on how others classify you, consider how you identify yourself. The way in which you identify yourself is the best refection of yourself-image。
Beyond feelings is designed to introduce you to the subject of critical thinking. The subject is undoubtedly new to you because it is not taught in most elementary and secondary schools. In fact, until fairly recently it was not taught in most colleges. During the 1960s and much of the 1970s the emphasis was more on subjectivity than on objectivity, more on feeling than on thought.
Over the past ten years, however, a number of studies of America’s schools have criticized the neglect of critical think, and a growing number of educators and leaders in business, industry, and the professions have urged the development of new courses and teaching materials to overcome that neglect.
It is no exaggeration to say that critical thinking is one of the most important subjects you will study in college regardless of your academic major. The quality of your schoolwork, your efforts in your career, your contributions to community life, and your conduct of personal affairs will all depend on your ability to solve problems and make decisions.
The book has four main sections. The first, “The Context,” will help you to understand such important concepts as individuality, thinking, truth, knowledge, and opinion and to overcome attitudes and ideas that obstruct critical thinking. The second section, “The Problems,” will teach you to recognize and avoid nine common errors that often occur, singly or in combination, during the thinking process. The third section, “A Strategy,” will help you acquire the various skills used in addressing problems and issues. This section includes tips on identifying and overcoming you personal intellectual weaknesses, as well as techniques for becoming more observant, clarifying issues and conducting inquiry, interpreting evidence, analyzing other people’s views, and making sound judgments.
At the end of each chapter you will find a number of applications to challenge your critical thinking and provide exercise for your sills.
These applications cover problems and issues both timely and timeless.
The fourth section of the book, “Some Contemporary Issues,” presents additional important issues that continue to occupy the attention of the best thinkers of our time.
In brief, Beyond Feelings is designed to help you acquire the intellectual skills necessary to solve the exciting problems of today and tomorrow.
WHO ARE YOU?
365游戏官方网站 ，Suppose someone asked, “Who are you?” it would be simple enough to respond with your name. But if the person wanted to know the whole story about who you are, it would be more difficult to answer. You’d obviously have to give the details of your height and age and weight. You’d also have to include all your sentiments and preferences, even the secret ones you’d never shared with anyone - your affection for you parents; your desire to please the crowd you associate with; your dislike of your older sister’s husband; your allegiance to Budweiser beer, the Ford Motor Company, the Denver Broncos, Calvin Klein jeans, and Bruce Springsteen.
Your attitudes couldn’t be overlooked either - the impatience you have when an issue gets complex, your aversion to English courses, your rejection of communism, your fear of high places and dogs and speaking in public. The list would go on. To be complete, it would have to include all your characteristics - not only the physic cal but the emotional and intellectual as well.
To provide all that information would be quite a chore. But suppose the questioner was still curious, and now asked, “How did you get the way you are?” if your patience were not yet exhausted, changes are you’d answer something like this: “I’m that way because i choose to be, because I’ve considered other sentiments and preferences and attitudes and made my selection. The one I chose fit my style and personality best.” That answer is a natural enough one, and in part it’s true. But in a larger sense it’s not true. The impact of the world on all of us is much greater than we usually realize.
Ø INFLUENCES ON IDENTITY
You are not only a member of a particular species, Homo sapiens, but you exist a t a particular moment in the history of the species. Being a young adult today is quite different from being a young adult thirty years ago, and very different from being a young adult in 1500 or 10,000 B.C. The world’s state of progress differs, and likewise its knowledge and beliefs and values. The opportunities for learning and working and relaxing are not the same. So people’s daily thoughts and actions vary.
Variations in place and circumstance also can make a difference. If you’re from a large city, the odds are you look at many things differently from someone in the country. A person raised for eighteen years in New York City or Los Angeles who goes to college in town of 3,000 will find the experience difficult. So will a person raised on an isolated farm. But probably for opposite reasons! If you are an American sports enthusiast, you’re probably interested in football, baseball, or basketball. But if you were Chinese, you’d much more familiar with and excited about ping-ping, and if you were European, soccer. If your father is an automobile mechanic, you undoubtedly know more about cars than does the average person. If your mother is a teacher, you’ll tend have a somewhat different perspective on school and teachers than do other students.
In much the same way, all the details about your family very likely have some bearing on who you are.Their religion, race, national origin, political affiliation, economic level, attitudes towards one another, all have made some contribution to your identity.
Of course, people may reject what they are taught at home. People between the ages of eighteen and twenty-one often have sharp and apparently permanent differences with their parents in terms of beliefs and values on many issues. Still, whether you accept or reject what you are taught, your present position grows out of those teachings. It is a response to your upbringing. Given different parents with a different culture and different values - growing up, say, in Istanbul rather than Dubuque - your response would necessarily be different. You would, in that sense, not be the same person.
Ø THE ROLE OF MASS CULTURE
In centuries past, the influence of family and teachers was the dominant, and sometimes the only, influence on children. Today, however, the influence exerted by mass culture( but broadcast media, newspapers, magazines and popular music) is often greater.
By age eighteen the average teenager has spent 11,000 hours in the class room and 22,000 hours in front of the television set. He or she has done perhaps 13,000 school lessons, yet has watched more than 750,000 commercials.
What effects does mass culture have on young people ( and many adults, as well)? To answer, we need only consider the formats and devices commonly used. Modern advertising typically bombards the public with slogans and testimonials by celebrities. This approach is designed to appeal to emotions and create artificial needs for products and services. As a result, many people develop the habit of responding emotionally, impulsively, and gullibly to such appeals.
Television programmers use frequent scene shifts and sensory appeals such as car crashes, violence, and sexual encounters to keep audience interest from diminishing. Then they add frequent commercial interruptions. As a result, many people find it difficult to concentrate in school or at work. They may think the teacher or the job is boring when, in fact, mass culture has made them impatient with the normal rhythms of life. Finally, mass culture promotes values that oppose those held by most parents. Play is presented as more fulfilling than work, self-gratification more desirable than self-control, and materialism more meaningful than idealism. People who adopt these values without questioning them may end up sacrificing worthy goals to their pursuit of “a good time” and lots of money.
Ø EFFECTS ON SELF-IMAGE
The circumstances of our lives are so influential that they affect not only our view of the world but also our view of ourselves. If you were to make a list of your capacities for different kinds of activities, you might say, for example, “i work well with mechanical things, but i have no talent for dealing with ideas.” Would that be accurate? Not necessarily! It would be what you had come to believe about yourself, the conclusion you’d reached as a result of your experience. However, it might very well be a conclusion you reached too soon.
Dr. Maxwell Maltz explains the amazing results one educator had in improving the grades of school children by changing their self-images. He had observed that when they saw themselves as stupid in a particular subject ( or stupid in general), they unconsciously acted to confirm their self-images. They believed they were stupid, so they acted that way. Reasoning that it was their defeatist attitude rather than lack of ability that was defeating them, the educator set out to change their self-images. He found that when he accomplished that, they no longer behaved stupidly!
Maltz records how this same negative self-image kept a salesman from every reaching more than a certain level of sales. When his territory was changed to a larger and more promising territory, he continued to make the same dollar amount, not a bit more. The trouble was found to be not in the conditions of his work but in his self-image. He had decided he couldn’t exceed a certain amount, and so he subconsciously prevented himself from doing so.
Maltz concludes from these and other examples that our experiences can work a kind of self-hypnotism on us, suggesting a conclusion about ourselves and then urging us to make it come true.